Well, this isn't your typical fight among gays and ex-gays. An ex-gay advocate was sued after he went on television and told viewers that a gay activist had wished murder and harm on him. Gregory Quinlan may say he's no longer gay -- but he does have a flare for the dramatic, it would seem.
Quinlan appeared on WDCW-TV in October 2011 and told viewers that Wayne Besen, executive director of Truth Wins Out, a nonprofit critical of the ex-gay movement, said Quinlan should get run over by a bus -- or better, injected with AIDS.
A Virginia judge ruled that Quinlan, the president of Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays, didn't technically defame his gay nemesis.
Here's exactly what Quinlan said on the air:
"Wayne Besen. He's asked for people, you know, 'somebody
needs to run Greg over.' 'He needs to be hit with a bus.' 'Somebody
should inject him with AIDS.' Those are the things Wayne Besen and Truth
Wins Out says about me."
Quinlan later indicated that he knew Besen wasn't serious and that it was obviously "Wayne just being Wayne -- one part bluster, two parts hyperbole, and three parts hot air."
statements were made with knowing falsity or with reckless disregard for
the truth," Hudson wrote. "Reckless conduct is not measured by whether
a reasonably prudent man would have published, or would have
investigated before publishing. There must be sufficient evidence to
permit the conclusion that the defendant in fact entertained serious
doubts as to the truth of his publication."
The judge noted that establishing actual malice is no easy task, because the plaintiff needs very clear and convincing evidence that malice occurred. "Plaintiff has not met his burden, and his